"COCKEYED HAPPY" NEWSLETTER

 

June 2022

Dear friends,

Sheridan, Wyoming, is the place where Ernest Hemingway began his love affair with Wyoming—“cockeyed wonderful country,” he called it.  Recently I’ve participated in two events in, and near, Sheridan: a book signing at Wyoming’s oldest bookstore—Sheridan Stationery; and also an appearance and reading at the Sheridan Book Review Club, Sheridan’s oldest book club, founded in 1913. It was held at the historical Eatons’ ranch in Wolf, Wyoming—the first dude ranch in the U.S.—an appropriate venue since Hemingway spent all his time in Wyoming on dude ranches.  Join me in July in Sheridan once again for the upcoming Hemingway Society Conference, July 17-19, before it moves to Cooke City, Montana. Mega-writer Craig Johnson, creator of the Longmire series, is a keynote speaker at the event, and on Sunday, July 17, I’ll be reading from Cockeyed Happy, followed by happy hour at 5 p.m. in the college library where I’ll discuss the unlikely friendship between Hemingway’s first and second wives, Hadley and Pauline. The event is open to the public.

See you in Sheridan!

Darla

 

DUDE HEAVEN The oldest dude ranch in the United States, Eatons’ Ranch was created by three brothers – Howard, Willis and Alden – in 1879 in North Dakota and moved in 1904 to the current location on the eastern slopes of the Bighorn Mountains in northeastern Wyoming for more suitable riding terrain for their ever-growing number of guests. I was honored to be invited to the Sheridan Review Book Club at Eatons’ earlier this month to give a reading of Cockeyed Happy. The lively, engaged group of some 60 women shared lunch, cocktails and laughs – asked smart questions about Pauline and Ernest’s Wyoming adventures – and were just generally fun to hang out with. While Ernest and Pauline Hemingway didn’t stay here, they enjoyed summer visits to other dude ranches in the area, the Folly and Spear-O-Wigwam ranches.  Read here for more on Eatons’ storied history and how the Eaton brothers sparked the guest ranch industry.

 

COCKEYED HAPPY HOUR I also visited Wyoming in May, where the Sheridan Stationery Bookstore hosted a reading and book signing. Photographer Matt Gaston of The Sheridan Press attended, sharing photos with the local newspaper. Keeping with the “oldest” theme, Sheridan Stationery is the town’s oldest bookstore – and one of the oldest retail shops still open for business – dating back to 1935, when it sold office supplies and typewriters along with the books and served as a typewriter repair shop. Could Hemingway have stopped in for paper or a typewriter ribbon when he was in the area? Current owner Jessica Bohnsack and her husband bought the shop in 2021 and recently moved it to a new, expanded location – perfect for hosting gatherings!

 

PARIS IN AUTUMN Paris is poised to reclaim its title as one of the world’s top travel destinations, with  The New York Times recently predicting “a stylish comeback for the City of Light.” I’m feeling properly on-trend as their news came just days after I decided to host my small-group Paris writing workshop, the Left Bank Writers Retreat, this September 24 – 30, 2022. The retreat’s signature mix of Hemingway-centric one-on-one writing instruction and an immersive travel experience of Ernest Hemingway haunts gives a maximum of eight writers the opportunity to improve their writing skills and find inspiration from history while enjoying a culture-filled, week-long Parisian adventure with like-minded literary enthusiasts. Our itinerary includes daily plein air writing workshops in the city’s lovely gardens and creative spaces, trips to world-famous museums including Musée d’Orsay and Musée de l’Orangerie, sipping wine and tasting from French bistro menus in cafes frequented by 20th-century literary legends Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Gertrude Stein, a boat cruise to the Eiffel Tower, picnicking at Versailles and more. Writers in all genres and at all levels are welcome. Will you join us? A $500 deposit holds your spot. Visit leftbankwriters.com for details.

LAST-MINUTE GIFT FOR DADS For those still shopping for a Father’s Day gift for a hard-to-shop-for dad, Cockeyed Happy shares Ernest Hemingway’s introduction to the Wild West with Wyoming fishing, hunting, horseback riding and fast cars (well, for the 1930s), as well as writing, famous literary figures and more – and Amazon can ship it most places in the U.S. in two or three days ahead of June 19 Father’s Day. And if you drop me an email, I’m happy to send your dad a signed bookplate to go with his copy.

If you haven’t read Cockeyed Happy yet – or need a gift for Dad or a friend – order from your favorite local bookseller or one of these:

 
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Past Newsletters


"Cockeyed Happy" April 2022 Newsletter

Happy Spring! It’s fantastic to be attending events in person again, and I’ve met many new friends at readings, book clubs and through email. Recently a book club in Denver hosted me in person to discuss Cockeyed Happy and I Zoomed with a lively Tennessee book club who came prepared with a list of excellent questions.

"Cockeyed Happy" January 2022 Newsletter

Happy 2022! Exactly a century ago, in January 1922, Ernest Hemingway and Hadley, his first wife, moved into their first Paris apartment on Rue du Cardinal Lemoine—and his path as an expat writer in Paris began.

"Cockeyed Happy" Holiday Edition 2021 Newsletter

During this festive season, I’d like to express my heartfelt gratitude, to new friends and old, for the support you’ve given Cockeyed Happy. In this newsletter, you’ll find some holiday gift ideas and a story about Pauline and Ernest on safari at Christmas, along with a bit of self-promotion (sorry!).

"Cockeyed Happy" November 2021 Newsletter

Thank you for the emails you’ve sent regarding Cockeyed Happy! It has been delightful to hear from old and new friends, and to hear your thoughts and comments about Ernest, Pauline and Wyoming.

"Cockeyed Happy" September 2021 Newsletter

September flew past with the official publication date of Cockeyed Happy on September 14, and the launch parties, book events and media interviews surrounding it.

"Cockeyed Happy" August 2021 Newsletter

The launch of Cockeyed Happy begins this month in Wyoming with a reading near my hometown at The Brinton Museum in Big Horn, Wyoming—where Ernest Hemingway came on his very first visit to Wyoming in 1928.